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Media Deja Vu

By Yisrael Medad
3/12/2008, 12:00 AM

You've seen this story at the Arutz Sheva site.  Religious sector threatens anti-Arab violence.

For me, it recalls a 13-year old tale of similar details.  At the height of the anti-Rabin protests, Avishai Raviv, a presumed right-wing extremist, was at the center of some very vicious protests.  In September 1995, he escorted Amir Oren, Channel One's reporter, to a supposed "swearing-in ceremony" at Mt. Herzl conducted for a new underground, EYAL, which was to do Rabin in.

Two complaints were made.  On by MK Yael Dayan, asking why the police hadn't yet picked up the plotters.  The second was by me, as director of Israel's Media Watch.  Mine, however, was directed at the reporter and his report which I claimed was staged and therefore of doubtful relaibility which meant that Oren and his editors, were deceiving the public.  It just so happens that as employees of a public authority, the IBA, that act was a crime.

It was a long story (for those interested, the old IMW site has lots of material in English and Hebrew and you can start here.  Two of my summaries are here and here).  In the end, although Raviv was revealed in the Shamgar Report secret codicil to have been a GSS agent and much more, eventually, the High Court for Justice wasn't just and our appeal was tossed out.

And now, it's being repeated.  A Channel One reporter broadcasts a vague, unsubstantiated accusation - but not just any reporter.  Ayala Chasson is the one most connected to Ehud Olmert, as if she was his spokesperson.  Everyone else except Chasson, it seems, "knows" that this is a put-up.  My guess: a bunch of former Kachniks are doing what they do best: manipulating the press, a very willing and compliant press.  Because the picture presented - right-wing religious fanatics bent on killing and disrupting the "peace process" - fits in with the media's mindset.

But the damage is done.  And someone in the GSS (Shabak) or even Prime Minister's Office is rubbing his hands with glee.


I found a poster with Rabbis signed on relating to the Merkaz Massacre but it only deals with Arab...labor.